Title:
Strawberry plant named 'Eves Delight'
Kind Code:
P1


Abstract:
This invention relates to a new and distinctive day-neutral cultivar, designated as ‘Eves Delight’ primarily adapted to the growing conditions in the United Kingdom. This day-neutral (everbearing) cultivar is primarily characterized by large flowers, an erect and upright growth habit, a large fruit size having superior uniformity, primarily wedge-shaped berries exhibiting a glossy bright red appearance, significantly better flavored berries, firmer fruit skin, significantly longer flower trusses, very moderate petiole pubescence, and a medium to late season production with moderate yields.



Inventors:
Vinson, Peter Edward (Hernhill Faversham Kent, GB)
Warren, Simon Peter (Hernhill Faversham Kent, GB)
Application Number:
12/320140
Publication Date:
09/10/2009
Filing Date:
01/21/2009
Assignee:
DEWARD VINSON LIMITED (KENT, GB)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A01H5/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
BELL, KENT L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ROSENBERG, KLEIN & LEE (3458 ELLICOTT CENTER DRIVE-SUITE 101, ELLICOTT CITY, MD, 21043, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A new and distinct cultivar of strawberry plant named ‘Eves Delight’ substantially as herein described and illustrated by the characteristics set forth above.

Description:

PRIORITY CLAIM

This application claims priority under 35 U.S.C. § 119(f) of application number 2008/0369 filed on 18 Feb. 2008 at the European Community Plant Variety Office (CPVO).

GENUS AND SPECIES

Fragaria×ananassa Duch.

CULTIVAR DENOMINATION

‘Eves Delight’

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The new and distinct cultivar of strawberry originated from a controlled cross performed in a glasshouse as part of an ongoing breeding program belonging to Edward Vinson Limited at Kemsdale Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom between the agricultural selections 02P78 (not patented) and 02EVA13R (not patented) in 2003.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a new and distinct day-neutral (everbearing) strawberry cultivar designated as “Eves Delight.’ The cultivar is botanically known as Fragaria×ananassa Duch. Under growing conditions in the United Kingdom this day-neutral (everbearing) cultivar has shown significant improvements over the variety ‘Albion’ (U.S. Plant Pat. No. 16,228). Improvements over ‘Albion’ include, but are not limited to, higher fruit quality, larger fruit size, superior eating quality and skin firmness, and paler fruit color.

The female parent, 02P78, is a day-neutral cultivar cropping in the United Kingdom in July August, and September. 02P78 is a low yielding, but high quality cultivar, expressing large fruit size. The fruit of 02P78 has a pale orange color, an even rounded shape, and good firmness characteristics. 02P78, however, exhibits a poor flavor.

The male parent, 02EVA13R, is a day-neutral cultivar cropping in the United Kingdom in July August, and September. 02EVA13R is a low yielding cultivar expressing good fruit quality and size, however, the firmness and flavor of 02EVA13R are below average.

The female parent, 02P78, is a hybrid of Fragaria×ananassa Duch and the male parent, 02EVA13R, was derived from an open pollinated seed of an unknown cultivar of Fragaria×ananassa Duch. Both parental cultivars were selected in 2002 from the same field, and while they were not considered to have commercial potential, both parental selections were retained as parental cultivars. Accordingly, ‘Eves Delight’ is of the species Fragaria×ananassa Duch.

The seedling fruited in the summer of 2004 at the seedling field located at Meadow Bank, Kemsdale Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom was originally designated 04CF21, and subsequently named ‘Eves Delight’ for introduction. 04CF21 was selected because the cultivar produced a moderate yield of extremely high quality and good sized fruit. Additionally, the cultivar exhibited a firmness and flavor of outstanding merit combined with a unique and pleasing aroma.

‘Eves Delight’ was trialed in trial plots at Kemsdale Farm during the years 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008. During the period of trials ‘Eves Delight’ was reproduced asexually for four (4) successive years. For each trial year, asexual propagation of ‘Eves Delight’ was by means of stolons (runners) and took place at the glasshouse facility as part located at Kemsdale Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom. Additionally, during the year 2007, however, a limited number of ‘Eves Delight’ plants were reproduced asexually by stolons at a propagation facility belonging to Edward Vinson Limited, located at Sandbanks Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom. In all four (4) generations, plants were observed for trueness to type during the fruiting phase with no abnormalities being observed. Further propagation, at nurseries belonging to Edward Vinson Limited, located at Faversham and Deal in Kent and Southampton in Hampshire, United Kingdom, was completed on a larger scale in 2008 using tissue culture plants as mother plants. This propagation demonstrated no obvious abnormalities in these plants. All propagules of ‘Eves Delight’ have been observed to be true to type in that during all asexual multiplication, the vegetative and fruit characteristics of the original plant have been maintained.

The new cultivar is primarily adapted to the climate and growing conditions of south eastern England and other regions of similar climate and day length. These regions provide the necessary winter temperatures required for it to produce a strong vigorous plant and to produce fruit in the summer harvest season from June through September, depending on location.

The following list of traits, in combination, defines the new cultivar as a unique cultivar distinguishable from other commercial varieties in the region:

    • erect, upright growth habit;
    • large fruit size having superior uniformity;
    • primarily wedge-shaped berries exhibiting a glossy bright red appearance;
    • significantly better flavored berries;
    • significantly firmer fruit skin;
    • significantly longer flower trusses, their relative position to the leaves being exposed and protruding to the sides of the plant and loaded with fruit;
    • very moderate petiole pubescence;
    • medium to late season production with moderate yields; and
    • extended harvest season.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE PHOTOGRAPHS

The accompanying color photographs show typical specimens of the new cultivar, designated at various stages of development as nearly true as is possible to make in color reproductions. The depicted plant and plant parts were from the 2008 harvest season, approximately five (5) months after planting.

FIG. 1 Typical fully developed primary fruit, measured in length (cm).

FIG. 2 Typical fully developed primary fruit, measured in width (cm).

FIG. 3 Typical primary fruit and typical primary flowers.

FIG. 4 Typical fruiting truss.

FIG. 5 A selection of large primary fruits (outer circle) having a wedge-shape, secondary fruits (middle circle) having a conical shape, and tertiary fruits (inner circle) having a rounded conical shape.

FIG. 6 ‘Eves Delight’ fruit skin color identified using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (44 A).

FIG. 7 Typical ‘Eves Delight’ fruit interior flesh coloration near the outside fruit surface identified using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (33 A).

FIG. 8 Typical ‘Eves Delight’ fruit inner core coloration identified using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (39B).

FIG. 9 An ‘Eves Delight’ flower with visible corolla (petals, stamens, and ovary).

FIG. 10 A typical mature leaf with attached petiole and leafy stipule at the base of the petiole, measured in length and having rounded serrations and channel-like venations.

FIG. 11 Upper leaf surface color identification of a fully expanded ‘Eves Delight’ leaf using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (137A).

FIG. 12 Lower leaf surface color identification of a fully expanded ‘Eves Delight’ leaf using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (138B).

FIG. 13 Petiole color identification using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (144B).

FIG. 14 Stipule color identification using The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart (144 A).

FIG. 15 Photo of a cropping ‘Eves Delight’ plant in mid-summer with leaves, flowers, and fruits visible at various developmental stages.

FIG. 16 Photo of a cropping ‘Eves Delight’ plant in late summer with leaves, flowers, and fruits visible at various developmental stages.

FIG. 17 Close shot of typical ‘Eves Delight’ fruit trusses showing large primary fruits as well as secondary and tertiary fruits.

FIG. 18 Close shot of typical ‘Eves Delight’ fruit trusses with fruits at various developmental stage visible and an open flower on the same flower-fruit truss.

DETAILED BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION OF NEW CULTIVAR

The following description of ‘Eves Delight’, unless otherwise noted, is based on observations taken of plants and fruits grown in a trials field covered with tunnels and polyethylene covers as part of an ongoing breeding program at Kemsdale Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom.

The following description is in accordance with UPOV terminology and the color terminology used herein is in accordance with The Royal Horticultural Society Colour Chart. The color descriptions and other phenotypical descriptions may deviate from the stated values and descriptions depending upon variation in environmental, seasonal, climatic, and cultural conditions.

Propagation

The new variety is principally propagated by way of stolons. Although propagation by stolons is presently preferred, other known methods of propagating strawberry plants may be used. Strawberry plants root well following transplanting.

Comparative Fruit Characteristics

The fruit characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ include, but are not limited to, the characteristics of the fruit itself, the fruit production, and the fruit quality. Fruit characteristics for ‘Eves Delight’ were observed over four (4) seasons and the data was taken from the 2008 harvest season.

Table 1

Table 1 shows the average fruit yield and size of ‘Eves Delight’ from measurements taken during the year 2008 when subjected to the environmental and growing conditions as they existed in the United Kingdom at that time. The measurements of ‘Albion’ were taken in the United States and cannot reflect the average total yields or primary berry weights of ‘Albion’ as they might exist under the same environmental or growing conditions that ‘Eves Delight’ was subjected to when grown in the United Kingdom.

In 2008 fruit harvest started on 6 June and continued through September. The plants of ‘Eves Delight’ were grown in a nursery at Kemsdale Farm, in Kent, United Kingdom and planted in April 2008.

CultivarCultivar
(Average total yield in grams per plant)Average(Primary berry weight in grams)Average
‘Eves Delight’1,216‘Eves Delight’34.7
‘Albion’2,417‘Albion’33.0

Table 2

Table 2 compares the fruit characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ berries with another standard variety. Measurements provided were taken from fully mature (ripe) primary fruits. Fruit width is measured across the widest part of the berry, typically, across the shoulders of the berry.

Characteristic‘Eves Delight’‘Albion’
Exterior ColorRed 44A5R 3/7
(RHS)(Munsell)
Internal ColorRed 39B7.5R 4/11
(RHS)(Munsell)
Achene ColorYellow 2A7.5R 3/6
(RHS)(Munsell)
Mature Fruit Length Mean (mm)5160.6
Mature Fruit Width Mean (mm)4249.7
Mature Fruit Length/Width1.211.2
Ratio
Achenes per Primary Berry552/primary berry440.8/primary berry
Achene PositionEven to slightlyMostly indented,
protrudedsome even

Table 3

Table 3 compares the fruit quality characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ with the fruit quality characteristics of ‘Albion.’ Comparisons of fruit quality include, but are not limited to, flesh firmness, soluble solids (as measured by % Brix), and acidity.

Characteristic‘Eves Delight’‘Albion’
Fruit Skin FirmnessFirmFirm to very firm
Flesh FirmnessSoft internal textureFirmer internal
texture
Fruit Appearance 5.04.0
Fruit AromaStrong aromaMedium aroma
Fruit SweetnessHigh sugars, strong sweetnessMedium sweetness
Soluble Solids10.58.5
AcidityLow acidityMedium acidity
  • Detailed fruit characteristics of ‘eves delight’:
      • Ratio of length to width.—Longer than broad.
      • Size.—Large.
      • Predominant shape.—Conical.
      • Aroma.—Strong.
      • Differences in shape between primary and secondary fruit.—Moderate to strong.
      • Differences in shape between primary and tertiary fruit.—Slight to moderate.
      • Band without achenes.—Very small width.
      • Color of mature fruit (ripe).—Bright red (Red 44A).
      • Evenness of color.—Even.
      • Glossiness.—High.
      • Achene position.—Even to slightly protruded.
      • Attitude of the calyx segments.—Equally flush and reflexed.
      • Color of the upper (adaxial) surface of the calyx.—Green (Green 138A).
      • Color of the lower (abaxial) surface of the calyx.—Green (Green 143A).
      • Size of calyx in relation to fruit diameter.—Generally smaller.
      • Firmness of skin.—Very firm.
      • Firmness of flesh.—Moderate firmness.
      • Color of flesh.—Interior flesh coloration near the outside edges of the fruit surface approaches bright orange-red (Orange-Red 33A) and the inner core approaches red (Red 39B).
      • Hollow center.—Moderately expressed in primary fruit, weakly expressed in secondary and tertiary fruit.
      • Achene color.—Generally bright yellow (Yellow 2A), however, when fully exposed to light, achenes are red (Red 39A) in color.
      • Time of flowering (50% of plants at first flower).—Medium to late.
      • Time of ripening (50% of plants with first ripe fruit).—Medium to late.
      • Type of bearing.—Day-neutral (everbearing).
  • Comparative plant characteristics:

Table 4

Table 4 is a comparison of the plant characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ with the plant characteristics of ‘Albion’ when the varieties were grown side-by side in Kent, United Kingdom. Comparisons of plant characteristics include differences in plant height, width, and breadth.

Characteristic‘Eves Delight’‘Albion’
Plant Height Mean (mm)380252
Plant Width Mean (mm)427.5388
Plant Breadth Mean (mm)460370
  • Detailed plant characteristics of ‘eves delight’:
      • Size.—Large.
      • Habit.—Erect and open.
  • Comparative foliage characteristics:

Table 5

Table 5 compares the leaf characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ with the leaf characteristics of ‘Albion.’ Foliage characteristics are taken from a fully mature tri-foliate leaf during mid-season.

Characteristic‘Eves Delight’‘Albion’
Adaxial Surface ColorGreen 137A5GY 3/2
(RHS)(Munsell)
Abaxial Surface ColorGreen 138B5GY 5/6
(RHS)(Munsell)
Mid-tier Leaflet Length Mean9273
(mm)
Mid-tier Leaflet Width Mean9368
(mm)
Petiole Length Mean (mm)224105
Petiole Diameter (mm)44.1
Petiole ColorYellow-Green 144B5GY 7/10
(RHS)(Munsell)
Petiolule Length Mean (mm)147.4
Stipule Length Mean (mm)2923.3
Stipule ColorYellow-Green 144A5GY 6/8
(RHS)(Munsell)
Serrations per Leaf19.271.8
Number of Leaflets/Leaf33
Leaf ConvexitySome flat, someSome flat, most
slightly concaveslightly concave
  • Detailed foliage characteristics of ‘eves delight’:
      • Color of adaxial surface.—Dark green (Green 137A).
      • Color of abaxial surface.—Light green to nearly gray green (Green 138B).
      • Shape in cross section.—Flat to slightly concave.
      • Blistering.—Slight to strong on the mid-tier leaflet.
      • Number of leaflets/leaf.—Five.
      • Mid-tier leaflet.—Size — Medium. Length/width ratio — Wider than long. Shape of base — Obtuse. Shape of serrations — Crenate. Venation of leaflets — Pinnate.
      • Petiole.—Pubescence density — Moderate. Petiole color — Medium to light green (Yellow-Green 144B). Stipule color — Medium to dark green (Yellow-Green 144A). Anthocyanin coloration of stipules — Very weak.
      • Attitude of hairs.—Hairs are perpendicular to the petiole. Size of bract leaflets — Small. Frequency of bract leaflets — Bract leaflets are present on over 90% of flower trusses.
  • Comparative flower and inflorescence characteristics:

Table 6

Table 6 compares the inflorescence and secondary flower characteristics of ‘Eves Delight’ with the inflorescence and secondary flower characteristics of ‘Albion.’ Inflorescence characteristics are taken from a fully mature plant during full bloom. Flower characteristics are taken from a primary flower at full maturity.

Characteristic‘Eves Delight’‘Albion’
Fruiting Truss Length Mean (mm)218.2170
Corolla Diameter Mean (mm)36.827.0
Calyx Diameter Mean (mm)3735.8
Petal Length Mean (mm)13.712.7
Petal Width Mean (mm)14.712.6
Petal Length/Width Ratio0.931.01
Petals per Flower Mean5-65-8
  • Detailed inflorescence characteristics of ‘eves delight’:
      • Position relative to foliage.—Most exposed, some even.
      • Fruiting truss length.—Long.
  • Detailed flower characteristics of ‘eves delight’:
      • Color.—White.
      • Size.—Large.
      • Size of calyx relative to corolla.—Equal.
      • Petal length to width ratio.—Wider than long.
      • Petal shape.—Nearly round having an obtuse base and apex.
      • Petal margins.—Entire.

Pest Reactions

The plants of ‘Eves Delight’ exhibit resistance to Powdery Mildew (Podosphaera leucotricha). They are also partially resistant to Crown Rot (Phytophthora cactorum) and Verticillium Wilt (Verticillium spp.). The susceptibility of the new cultivar to any of the virus complexes of the United Kingdom has not been determined.

COMPARISON WITH KNOWN VARIETIES

The variety which is believed to most closely resemble ‘Eves Delight’ is ‘Albion’ (U.S. Plant Pat. No. 16,228). When compared to similar cultivar ‘Albion’, ‘Eves Delight’ differs by the following characteristics.

‘Eves Delight’ is a typical day-neutral strawberry cultivar, being slightly weaker in expressing this character than ‘Albion.’ When compared to ‘Albion’ under United Kingdom growing conditions, ‘Eves Delight’ has a larger fruit size with greater uniformity and shape, a significantly firmer fruit skin, and a significantly longer flower truss. Additionally, the berries of ‘Eves Delight’ exhibit a glossy bright red appearance and are significantly better flavored than the berries of ‘Albion.’

‘Eves Delight’ exhibits an erect, somewhat open growth habit. When ‘Eves Delight’ is grown in the United Kingdom, the plant size is generally greater than ‘Albion.’ Specifically, ‘Eves Delight’ exhibits longer petioles, larger leaves, and longer flower trusses. The leaf size of ‘Eves Delight’ is medium and the leaflets are generally round and slightly wider than longer than the leaflets of ‘Albion.’ Additionally, the petiole and petiolule length of ‘Eves Delight’ is significantly greater than ‘Albion.’ Petiole pubescence density of ‘Eves Delight’, however, tends to be very moderate compared to ‘Albion’ which exhibits a very heavy pubescence.

The leaflets of ‘Eves Delight’ typically exhibit a slightly round (obtuse) base and slightly rounded serrations. Moreover, ‘Eves Delight’ has a significantly smaller number of serrations per leaf than exhibited by ‘Albion.’ Some leaves of ‘Eves Delight’ exhibit slight to strong puckering/blistering, particularly on the mid-tier leaflet. Leaf pubescence is moderate, but less than that of ‘Albion’, and hairs appear perpendicular to the petiole.

Flower trusses typically grow clear of the foliage and flowers tend to open at or above the canopy, however, when the flower trusses are loaded with fruit, the trusses primarily protrude to the sides of the plant rather than in a completely upwards direction. Generally there are less flowers and fruit per truss than many other varieties, however, the number of flowers and fruit per truss is similar to Albion.

The flowers of ‘Eves Delight’ are slightly larger and stronger than those of ‘Albion’ and are generally fewer in numbers. The primary flowers for ‘Eves Delight’ are noticeably larger than those of ‘Albion’ and ‘Eves Delight’ exhibits wider petals than ‘Albion’. The calyx of ‘Eves Delight’ is distinctively larger than those of ‘Albion.’ The calyx on primary fruit for ‘Eves Delight’ exhibits some serration, a feature that is less common and/or visible on secondary and tertiary fruit.

The berries of ‘Eves Delight’ are large in size with a shape that is primarily wedge-shaped or conical. When grown in the United Kingdom, ‘Eves Delight’ fruit is less prone to ridging than ‘Albion.’ Moreover, the average number of achenes per primary berry of ‘Eves Delight’ is greater than the average number of achenes per primary berry of ‘Albion’.

The external and internal fruit color of ‘Eves Delight’ is brighter and is substantially lighter than the color expressed by ‘Albion.’ At higher temperatures, the fruit of ‘Eves Delight’ appears to be unaffected and retains its bright red color. ‘Albion’ fruit, however, has a darker skin coloration that typically becomes darker when exposed to higher temperatures.

‘Eves Delight’ is significantly sweeter and juicier than ‘Albion’ throughout the cropping season, providing a very pleasant combination of flavor, sugar and acidity. The fruit flesh of ‘Eves Delight’ is less firm than that of ‘Albion’ providing for a less crunchy texture and a more pleasant eating experience. ‘Eves Delight’ retains a very good fruit quality throughout the cropping season and is stable in its essential characteristics, i.e. fruit size, shape, quality, color, firmness, Brix levels, and good plant habit.

Commercial ratings for ‘Eves Delight’ are better than that of ‘Albion.’ insomuch as ‘Eves Delight’ has significantly better qualities and a smaller fraction of non-marketable or class 2 fruit than ‘Albion.’

When grown in the United Kingdom under appropriate management, ‘Eves Delight’ has larger fruit size than ‘Albion’, however, it produces slightly less yield per individual plant than ‘Albion.’ Flower initiation and flower expression of ‘Eves Delight’ are generally linear; however, variation in the climate might cause slight fluctuation. Termination of flowering is temperature dependent and day-length independent. ‘Eves Delight’ cropping season starts somewhat earlier than ‘Albion’ under United Kingdom growing conditions.